Wild Food Cafe – Neal’s Yard/Covent Garden

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Wild Cafe

Friends visited from Chichester for the day so had to show 6-year old Freya vibrant and colourful Neal’s Yard in Covent Garden. For the first time ever, I went up the staircase above Neal’s Yard Remedies shop and discovered this wonderful cafe. Was packed but the staff were very friendly and suggested txting me as soon as a table became free. 15 minutes later, we were sitting by the window.

Loved the freshness of the ingredients and the purity of taste. The green smoothie I ordered tasted a little powedery compared to the smooth textures I’m used to at home. I’d still order it as it’s full of nutrients; keeping an open mind: not everything has to taste the way I expect it to:)

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Fairy Feast Salad

  • Mixed baby leaves
  • Watermelon
  • Soft hemp-almond-macademia soft cheese
  • Pink olives
  • Fresh seasonal berries
  • Irish moss seaweed
  • Red pepper
  • Cucumber
  • Avocado chunks
  • Grain mustard dressing

Emerald Wild Smoothie

  • Chlorophyl-packed kale
  • Activated almonds
  • Apple
  • Lemon rind
  • Wild Cafe’s own superfood powder (chlorela, barley grass, nettle leaf, spirulina)

Visit: http://wildfoodcafe.com/

P.S. I revisited Wild Cafe for lunch today on my own and had the chocolate smoothie and the vegetarian burger. A little too vegetarian/raw tasting for my liking so found it a little heavy and dry in texture. The smoothie way too sweet and dissapointing to hear that they’re pre-made so no maple syrup was not an option:( Still, everything feels genuinely vegetarian/vegan and keen to join one of their mini retreats. The staff is exceptionally friendly and smiley:)

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Green Detox Smoothie

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One day early May I walked into Neal’s Yard Remedies flagship store in Covent Garden and picked up a detox smoothie recipe printed on a card. I was detoxing at the time so it was a timely find. I stick to the core ingredients listed below but I also experiment depending on mood of the day. I’ve been having this smoothie every single morning for the last 3 months and makes me feel amazing.

 

Green & clean smoothie

by Tipper Lewis, Naturopathic Herbalist at Neal’s Yard Remedies

Ingredients (serves 2)

  • Organic Greens Complex – 2 tsp*
  • Organic Virgin Coconut oil – 1 tsp
  • Chia seeds – 4 tsp A great source of omega 3 and fibre
  • Turmeric powder – 1/2 tsp Supports healthy liver, reduces inflammation
  • Avocado – 1
  • Fresh spinach or Kale – 1 large handful
  • Fresh parsley – 3 sprigs (minus stalks)
  • Cucumber – quarter
  • Lemon juice – generous squeeze
  • Apple juice or water – 400ml
  • Dandelion & Burdock Formula – 4ml (optional) Supports the body’s natural purification process

* Organic Greens Complex is a Neal’s Yard product. I have a couple of other products I use instead to mix it up a bit. These are: Organic Wheat Grass from New Zealand and Hemp Powder. The organic Greens Complex has a lot of spirulina and chlorella which is why I tend to use most days.

A note on liquids:

Apple juice: I don’t like my smoothies too sweet and once experimented with 400ml of apple juice and didn’t like it. I always put 200ml organic apple juice (I buy Organic Chegworth Valley cox apple juice from Borough Market) and 200ml filtered water. My mum who got hooked on it prefers to blend fresh apple with water. I do add the occasional fruit too: a handful of grapes or a few strawberries.

Instead of using the optional Dandelion & Burdock formula which contains alcohol (you can purchase from Neal’s Yard) I use 200ml tea I brewed from the night before. So apple juice and detox tea instead of apple juice and water.

Detox tea herbs & roots

  • Burdock Root
  • Dandelion Root
  • Cleavers
  • Nettle
  • Red Clover
  • Calendula

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Check out also my detox story: https://steller.co/s/5tVn26v9e6e

 

Monmouth coffeeshop Borough market

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An institution for years now, queues are forming before the doors open at 7:30am each morning. One of the many beauties of this coffeeshop is that you can choose your own beans and it costs the same. Many years ago I used to buy a beautiful Indian blend so spoke to one of the assistants and she pointed me to Guatemala Finca Capetillo. Very smooth. This is what I have each morning – its label is a beautiful turquoise colour which can be seen in the last shot (alongside the imprint of my favourite lipstick ‘Rebel’ by Mac).

Light gluten free lunch

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Homemade hummus/avocado dip:

  1. 1 avocado
  2. 1 teaspoon tahini
  3. 1 clove garlic
  4. juice of 1 lemon
  5. 1 pack of fresh/sprouted chickpeas*
  6. salt & pepper
  7. drizzle of organic extra virgin olive oil (preferably Greek)
  8. a bit of water (ideally from an alcaline jug such as BioCERA)

Put everything in a blender. I finally decided to go for the real deal: Vitamix.

*Use 1 tin of chickpeas for a more familiar hummus taste. The rawness of the chickpeas is only recommended for true raw energy lovers.

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The wrap:

I have tried many gluten free wraps and they’re all tasteless except this one. If you live in the UK and you can find this brand I highly recommend it. It was Waitrose and not Wholefoods where I purchased it. Double-checked this morning when I went to buy some more and had to visit both shops:)

Spread dip generously, fill with fresh organic rocket. Drizzle of olive oil, wrap and cut to pieces.

Today I ran out of rocket so added some thinly sliced cucumber and cut it like a sandwich:)

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A few tips on eating especially if you suffer from indigestion:

  • Do a food intolerance test. Most common allergies are wheat and dairy.
  • Chew well – I eat way too fast and end up feeling bloated.
  • Keep your mouth closed:)
  • Don’t drink while you’re eating; ideally an hour before or after.

Goat Island coastal walk

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Goat Island is only 10 minutes drive from home and the first marine reserve in New Zealand established in 1975. Even though overcast and a little drizzly that day, it was a rewarding, short (45-minute return) walk with a wonderful look out and bench to marvel and ponder at the choppy sea. Little Barrier island is faintly seen in the distance.

The University of Auckland’s Leigh Marine Laboratory is based next to the reserve.